Tuesday 21 April 2015

A Spring Shortie

There was yet another aborted attempt at bird ringing on Beer Head on Monday morning, when I got up there it was too blowy.  Mind you, the sunrise was nice to see.... 

It was actually a great shame about the wind as there were clearly quite a few Willow Warblers about, with most moving through rapidly.  Determined not to make it a wasted early morning wake up, I headed down into the valley for a look about, where I was surprised to see a Short-eared Owl flying around over the Estuary.  It spent a few minutes hunting over Axe and Colyford Marsh, before pitching on this distant post...

It stayed here until I left 20 mins later, and eight hours on when I returned, it was sat on the ground about 10 feet to the right of this post!  Later that evening it was hunting south of Black Hole Marsh, and it did the same again tonight apparently.  Although you can't tell it in my pic, it's a really dark bird, in fact when I first saw it in flight through the bins I was expecting it to turn out to be a Long-eared. Pity it wasn't, but still Short-eareds aren't ten a penny around here.

Today I didn't get out birding until late morning, and my first little wander was my most productive spell of the day.  My first Lesser Whitethroat of 2015 was singing well, and showing now and then, in the hedgerow that runs north of Coronation Corner. Two Common Sandpipers were flitting along the near bank of the Estuary here, with a Greenshank feeding on the first bit of exposed mud as the tide began to drop.  Best of all though were two adult summer Med Gulls that only gave themselves away by repeatedly calling to each other as they flew over rapidly and VERY high north west - sweet.  

Despite quite a lot of looking, didn't really see anything else of note whilst out birding this afternoon.  I did see an Osprey, but that was the comfort of my own kitchen, as it flew south west over Black Hole Marsh.  Why bother going out?

And to break up the text a bit, here's another Wheatear photo. At least it's a female for a change...

Oh yes, I nearly forgot. On Sunday evening whilst watching my sixth Red Kite of the month circling over fields between Colyford and Musbury, two Swifts zipped into my binocular view. It's funny how often this happens, when your watching one bird in the bins, and another you wouldn't otherwise have seen appears in the field of view. Maybe I should just randomly put my bins up to apparent empty skies every now and then?

No birds here....or are there?

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